Lahore: Extremists demand extortion money from family of jailed Christian leader

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Family of Pakistani Christian leader Aslam Pervaiz Sahotra reveals they are receiving threats from extremists who are demanding heavy amounts of extortion money from them. Asalm Pervaiz Sahotra has been behind the bars since the terror strikes at two churches in Youhanabad- a Christian neighborhood of Lahore.

Attack on churches in Pakistan

In this regard, Pakistan Christian Congress has urged the Shahbaz Sharif, Chief Minister of Punjab to intervene and provide security to the family of Aslam Pervez Sahotra. PCC maintains that Christian leader Aslam Pervaiz Sahotra who was detained by the police after the suicide attacks at two churches in Youhanabad. It was revealed that the extremist are threatening the Christian family to pay the extortion money or else be killed.

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Pakistan Christian Congress head, Dr. Nazir S Bhatti has called upon the Chief Minister of Punjab to issue directives for satisfactory security measures for family of Aslam Pervaiz Sahotra. PCC Chief said that the government must take action against the perpetrators who are threatening the Christian family and are demanding huge amounts of extortion money.

Aslam Pervaiz Sahotra, a Christian leader was arrested back in 2015; police claims he was one of the suspects. Christian community claims police had resorted to harassing the aggrieved instead of tracking down the perpetrators. In this connection, daughter of Aslam Pervaiz Sahotra said that police are yet to make perceptible progress in this case.

She complained that police was quick to take prompt action against the Christian community who protested against the attack yet no significant action was taken against those who had perpetrated the attacks. She said that he father suffers from chronic pain in the back, and prolonged detention has caused much nuisance to him.

Arrested Christian leader Aslam Pervaiz Sahotra heads Masiha Millat Party and is also associated with Human Liberation Commission is still languishing behind the bars. Another Christian leader Aftab Gill who is supporting family of Aslam Pervauz Sahotra claims he had received phone calls from unknown men who threatened him to withdraw his assistance from the Aslam’s family.

In an application, Aftab Gill informed the Capital City Police, Lahore to file a case against unknown men who had threatened him to stop helping the marooned Christian family. Aftab Gill claimed that on December 23, he received phone calls from unknown men who warned them to stop going to his office. “If you do not comply with our demands, you will be killed,’ he quoted the caller in his application.

Aftab Gill maintained that later on December 30, he received another phone call and the caller threatened him saying that they have obtained all the details of the family of Aslam Pervaiz Sahotra; and kidnapping them is a piece of cake for us. The caller demanded a huge extortion amount of 10,00,000 Rupees within one week otherwise family of Aslam Pervaiz Sahotra will be abducted.

Aftab Gill explained that he had informed local police about the situation but no action was taken. He urged the concerned authorities to provide security to the family of Aslam Pervaiz Sahotra, who are leading a fearful life. He maintained that immediate action should be taken against those who had threatened him or else they face serious dangers of being abducted or even being killed.